Team bosses shouldn’t be allowed to lobby stewards, Horner admits

Mark Sutton//Motorsport Images

Team bosses shouldn’t be allowed to lobby stewards, Horner admits

Formula 1

Team bosses shouldn’t be allowed to lobby stewards, Horner admits


Red Bull team principal Christian Horner believes bosses shouldn’t be allowed to lobby the stewards after both he and Mercedes’ Toto Wolff visited them during the British Grand Prix.

The controversial collision between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen had both teams on the radio to FIA race director Michael Masi trying to defend their respective drivers and explain why there should or shouldn’t be a penalty, and Horner was also vocal in television interviews. Wolff then radioed Masi to say he’d sent him an email with rule wording, leading Masi to state he doesn’t check emails during a race and that Wolff should go to see the stewards if he wished.

Horner says he then went to the stewards’ room too in order to state Red Bull’s case, but believes pressure should not be allowed to be put on those making the decisions regarding penalties.

“I saw Toto who was lobbying the stewards — I heard he was going there, so I went there to make sure our view was represented because I don’t think it’s right that team principals go up there to lobby the stewards,” Horner said.

“They should be locked away so they’re not influenced. I wanted to make sure there was a balanced opinion given, rather than trying to influence pressure on the stewards.

“I don’t think the stewards should be interfered with. They need to be there clear-headed to make those decisions. I don’t think anyone should be allowed to see the stewards during the course of a grand prix.”

Masi, however, said he has no problem with teams being allowed to present their side of an argument during the race, given that’s also what happens in post-race investigations.

“If we have an incident, after the race we invite the teams and the drivers to come and appear before the stewards, and that’s one of the elements the stewards have,” Masi said. “We have Monza last year when Lewis went and spoke to the stewards to understand it and look at the whole picture. so there’s no reason not to.”